|Borussia Monchengladbach||1-5||Bayern Munich
When Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola boldly went public with his desire to be reunited with former Barcelona protege Thiago Alcantara, he justified the seemingly superfluous addition to an already stellar midfield cast by declaring: “We have many players, but we need the special quality that he brings.”
There were still many sceptics. But probably not anymore; not after Thiago’s first two appearances for Bayern in last weekend’s Telekom Cup, as the Spain international oozed class during every second of his 98 minutes of action.
Thiago laid the foundations for a quite brilliant goal against Hamburg that even former Barcelona boss Guardiola couldn’t help but marvel at, the 22-year-old picking out a clever run from Franck Ribery with a wonderfully-measured ball into the area that the Frenchman deftly cushioned into the path of the supporting Mario Mandzukic, leaving the Croat with a tap-in.
And in the 5-1 demolition of Borussia Monchengladbach in the ‘Grand Final’, Thiago ingeniously chested home a cross from Jerome Boateng to net his first goal in a Roten shirt.
As Goal Germany‘s John Brandi underlines, the midfielder has already demonstrated just why Bayern moved so quickly to sign him, and why Manchester United are privately do disappointed at having been beaten to his signature.
“Thiago was the midfield anchor in a very attacking 4-1-4-1 formation against Hamburg,” he explained. “He was strong at winning the ball and showed his excellent passing skills.
“It was no surprise that he was one of the few players who were allowed to start again in the final and he capped another very strong performance with his first goal for the club.
“Consequently, the question mark over Thiago’s signing has already begun to fade.”
|Congratulations to Thiago Alcantara, Goal’s 219th World Player of the Week winner!
Leon Benko – HNK Rijeka
@DskHodgson: “Unbelievable night at Kantrida Stadium. Leon Benko – brilliant.”
Goal’s Enis Koylu: “The twice-capped Croatia forward scored three headers in HNK Rijeka’s Europa League rout of Prestatyn Town FC.”
@ONEWorldSports: “Donovan is a master of using that space between the CF and the wingers.”
Goal’s Dan Edwards: “Underlined his enduring importance to USA with a goal and three assists versus El Salvador.”
Aiden McGeady – S. Moscow
@rsport_en: “McGeady the star against Ural, scoring one and creating the second.”
Goal’s Tom Webber: “Showed why he’s being linked with a move to England by inspiring Spartak to a win that puts them top in Russia.”
Cristiano Ronaldo – R. Madrid
@Miguel Delaney: “Bit of showmanship from Ronaldo after a handball, then tries to backheel ball into top corner from 20 yards. Close.”
Goal’s Paul Macdonald: “Lit up Madrid’s friendly against Bournemouth with two goals, the first a trademark free kick, the second a cool finish.”